Worry about suicide
Suicide in Aboriginal communities is up to six times more frequent than that within the non-Aboriginal population. Many of the Elders we spoke to were particularly worried about suicide among young people.
Too many people dying too soon, too early and haven’t had the opportunity to show what they’ve got to offer.
The impact of suicide and grief and loss in our community is devastating. You go to bed, you wake up and you find that your best friend is gone over night.
Some parents were worried about the wellbeing of their children, particularly if their children were incarcerated. People worried about copycat suicides among the young ones. Aboriginal Health Workers frequently were worried about clients who were in bereavement and were ‘trying to stifle that terrible grief’ because that was a common trigger for suicide. People facing isolation and loneliness were seen to be at risk of suicide, particularly at anniversaries, birthdays or at Christmas.
Some people felt dismayed that families were not sticking together like they used to and that family or community unity had been compromised making people more vulnerable to suicide attempts.